Isao Yoshino - Short Bio

isao yoshino

Isao Yoshino

Isao Yoshino is a 40-year Toyota leader and spent a total of 14 years in the United States working on various projects; manufacturing, locally in Florida, water-ski boats equipped with Lexus engines, market research on stationary fuel cell equipment, etc. In 1979 and 1980, he became in charge of “Manager-Development Program”, which was a two-year company-wide program (called “Kan-Pro” in Japanese) for all the back-office managers at Toyota HQs in Japan. All managers created their own Hoshin Kanri documents using an A3 and went through a presentation two times a year (in June & December) with the officers attending for Q & A sessions. Through those two years, he witnessed all the managers reconfirm their roles & responsibilities and also relearn the importance of Hoshin Kanri. Yoshino believes the “Kan-Pro” campaign is one of the key practices that made Toyota what it is now. In 1983, Yoshino became a training manager to the shop-floor group & team leaders from NUMMI (a joint venture established in 1983 between GM and Toyota). He hired John Shook, now CEO of Lean Enterprise Institute, to prepare and run the training. Shook and Yoshino helped NUMMI to change their culture from “confrontation” to “cooperation”.